There’s a lot of focus on cloud computing at the moment and how it is redefining traditional IT infrastructure. What will ultimately decide if cloud computing lives up to the hype is whether it can bring benefits to businesses while saving them money. In order to demonstrate this we will set out to show how Office 365 reduces your IT costs by focusing on just a single feature it supplies, namely your business’s email. Email is a vital piece of any organization’s infrastructure and whether you manage your own in-house server or use a cloud service it is rarely free. The fact is though that most organizations cannot put an exact figure on how much email costs them. Moving to Office 365 it will be as low as €5.25 per user per month. We hope that the following points illustrate why this will be a significant reduction on your current costs.
Cloud computing moves IT off your balance sheet
With cloud services your IT costs become operating expenses. You no longer have occasional large capital investments in depreciating servers for your email service. You no longer need to upgrade or buy additional servers when your business grows or your requirements change. Predictable monthly subscriptions allow you to run your business more effectively than large irregular costs.
What are the hidden costs of your existing systems?
What are your current costs in order to provide an email service to each of your employees? There are many hidden costs that you may not have considered:
No SMB can cost effectively run an in-house email server and guarantee 99.9% uptime. At a minimum you need IT staff on call 24/7 and large investments in redundant hardware. A certain percentage of outages are inevitable, but do you know what your current percentage downtime is? Do you know the associated costs due to lost productivity or lost business? With Office 365 the responsibly for 99.9% uptime is shifted from your IT department to Microsoft.
Spam, viruses and full mailboxes all carry a cost. Important emails are bounced back to your customers, employees spend time managing the size of their mailbox potentially deleting important emails, viruses can bring your business to a standstill. Office 365 includes 25 GB mailboxes along with enterprise level protection from viruses and spam.
A significant loss of data can be catastrophic to a business. It can be triggered by a simple hard drive failure, fire, flood, theft or the loss of a laptop. If you manage your own servers you need a robust and regularly tested backup and recovery strategy. The costs of doing this properly are significant so many businesses cut corners and are not as safe from data loss as they think they are. Cloud services put the responsibility for protecting your data with providers who are experts at this and whose reputation depends on it.
We’ve only focused on Office 365 as a replacement for your email server. Hopefully you can see how this feature alone will significantly reduce your IT costs. There is a lot more to Office 365 than just email, find out more about the other features here.
A twitter post from Jon Roskill has revealed that Office 365 will be released on June 28th. Office 365 can be considered to be version 2.0 of Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS). We’ve had a great experience with BPOS ourselves and the clients we’ve helped migrate to it have been really pleased. After testing the beta version of Office 365 we are really looking forward to its release as we believe it’s going to build on the success of BPOS.
Read more about Office 365 here
We are pleased to announce that for 2011 CLOUDMASTER will be a sponsor of the Irish Windsurfing Association Slalom Series. This year the slalom series consists of 5 events all around Ireland between now and October. We are delighted to be involved with a series that is growing in popularity and where the racing is very exciting. Part of our sponsorship will be to use our experience in software development and GPS technology to create replays of the racing that will then be published online. We will be using the TackTracker software developed in Australia to do this.
Round 1 in Bantry, Cork unfortunately did not have enough wind for official racing. But Round 2 was a different story. Held last weekend at Jamie Knox watersports in Castlegregory, Kerry, a total of 16 races were run in winds of between 20 and 35 knots.
Replays of all of the gold fleet
races are now uploaded to the cloud and can be seen here: